Life

“Half The Picture” trailer

Half The Picture opens in select theaters in NYC and LA this June!

Via https://www.halfthepicture.com/:

HALF THE PICTURE consists of interviews with high profile women directors including Ava DuVernay, Jill Soloway, Lena Dunham, Catherine Hardwicke and Miranda July, and many others, discussing their early careers, how they transitioned to studio films or television, how they balance having a demanding directing career with family, and challenges and joys along the way. We also interview experts about gender inequality in Hollywood including the ACLU’s Melissa Goodman, Sundance Institute’s Caroline Libresco, Vanity Fair’s Rebecca Keegan, USC’s Dr. Stacy Smith and San Diego State University’s Dr. Martha Lauzen, who establish the magnitude of this employment discrimination issue as woman are shut out across the board, of an industry that systemically denies their expression and point of view.

OPENING IN THEATERS

Friday, June 8 – Village East Cinemas, NYC
https://www.citycinemas.com/villageeast/film/half-the-picture 

Friday, June 22 – Laemmle Monica, LA
https://www.laemmle.com/films/44008

Inspiration: Deborah Willis

I own a copy of photographer Deborah WillisReflections in Black that chronicles black photographers and photography of black life from 1840 to the present. 

Even before I knew of her own photography achievements, I knew that her work in this project was special and something that I had to own.  I tracked down a hard copy at a fabulous black owned bookstore in Harlem called Sisters Uptown Bookstore  and began my journey into a comprehensive history of black photography.  I stumbled upon a Vice article about her and it quietly relit the flame under my own journey as a black woman carving out a space for herself in this white male dominated industry.  As a 30+ year old digital photography student, it comes as no shock that most of the studied “greats” of this field look nothing like me and do not capture work that reflects my existence.  Representation matters and Deborah Willis’ continued effort to share stories of our existence inspires storytellers like myself to soldier on and continue sharing our perspective.  Check out the Vice article featuring Deborah Willis here and Reflections in Black can be purchased here.  

 

What I’m Reading: Citizen: An American Lyric

I’m not exactly sure how to describe Claudia Rankine’s Citizen: An American Lyric, but I can say that I can’t put the book down.  I’m a few pages away from finishing it (devoured it in 3 days) and it resonated deeply with my being as a black woman.  Her combination of poetry, essays and what I would call think pieces weave together to form an intricate and important collection of timely work in a society undoubtedly fueled by race. 

Via bn.com:

Claudia Rankine’s bold new book recounts mounting racial aggressions in ongoing encounters in twenty-first-century daily life and in the media. Some of these encounters are slights, seeming slips of the tongue, and some are intentional offensives in the classroom, at the supermarket, at home, on the tennis court with Serena Williams and the soccer field with Zinedine Zidane, online, on TV-everywhere, all the time. The accumulative stresses come to bear on a person’s ability to speak, perform, and stay alive. Our addressability is tied to the state of our belonging, Rankine argues, as are our assumptions and expectations of citizenship. In essay, image, and poetry, Citizen is a powerful testament to the individual and collective effects of racism in our contemporary, often named “post-race” society.

 

I FINISHED PAYING SALLIE MAE BACK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

AAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Word to @dee1music

That’s right.  Sallie Mae aka Navient, EDU Financial, all them hoes.  DONE.  With all of the madness happening, this definitely brings some much needed balance and happiness in my life 🙂

Taking it Back: The B Side Show Podcast #50something May 2013 Project Hygiene

Once again, it’s ON!  I’m resurrecting another classic episode of The B Side Show for your listening pleasure.  This was a great episode featuring my interview with Anshia B. Crooms (formerly Anshia B. Tull) of Project Hygiene http://projecthygiene.org/.  With the holidays just around the corner, this is a great time to revisit this show and focus on the importance of giving back.  Project Hygiene is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization established to support underprivileged youth, ages 10-18 by promoting health and wellness while denouncing bullying.  Through generous donations of personal hygiene products from supporters, Project Hygiene has been able to donate thousands of products to hundreds of adolescents across the country who could not afford or gain access to them.  This interview was taped over 4 years ago when the organization was in its infancy but I am happy to report that the organization is still going strong and making a difference with every child reached.  Check out the interview below!

The B Side Show Podcast #50 something

Travel: The Grand Canyon

Here are a few images from my recent trip to The Grand Canyon.  It is without a doubt MASSIVE.  So massive that the brain can’t really comprehend how something so vast can be created and sustained pretty much on its own.  The challenge in capturing something so immense (mid day on a beautiful sunny day might I add) is trying to figure out how to not make the images appear flat and boring.  I focused on perspective in a few shots by comparing something tiny such as a group of tourists or one person to The Grand Canyon and also had some fun with the editing.  Overall, it was a great trip and a photography bucket list item that I can now cross off 🙂 Check out my images below!  

  We also made a stop to The Hoover Dam.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And here’s someone doing exactly what the tour guide told us not to do.  There’s always one…and in this case, I saw more than one person standing on the rocks on this sunny but quite windy day just to get a photo.  This was the only person I managed to take a photo of.

STEP (Documentary)

Whew.  @Stepthemovie

I watched this trailer a few days ago without sound and without hearing a word, I knew it would be good.

   

Step hits select theaters August 4th.  Head over to http://www.foxsearchlight.com/stepmovie/ for more info!

Taking it back: The B Side Show podcast #8 Topic: Gay Marriage (Air date: 2007)

I’m taking it back, way back!  10 years or so ago I created The B Side Show Podcast.  The idea began with my frustration while a student at CSB (great school) with traditional FM radio and its limitations.  The same songs being played every hour, the same dry talk breaks, interviews with artists who weren’t saying much with their music or in their interviews and hosts who didn’t ask the thought provoking questions that I thought should have been asked OR discussing topics that I felt were important enough for some air time.  Back then, no one knew what a podcast was.  People were still beginning to understand and accept the concept of satellite radio and paying for exclusive radio content so the idea of an online radio show kept many scratching their heads.  Now, everyone and they mama has a podcast.  I noticed the change in tide and began seeing the over saturation of the podcast platform early on, right around the time that I began expanding my brand and began falling in love with photography and video productions.  By the time my last show aired, there were new podcasts by big named celebrities and public figures popping up weekly and the concept of playing music from artists not heard on traditional radio was something that had made its way into the mainstream.  In short, everyone was doing it.  I decided to cease production of the show (better to end on top) and rebrand the idea of the show to focus on my photography and visual arts.  Thus thebsideshow.com became shavonmeyers.com and my popular podcast episodes remained idle on various external drives.  

(Me at CSB as a student working on The B Side Show)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I recently started thinking about The B Side Show and how FIYAH it was (fire emoji).  I will pat myself all the way on the back because I was a one woman band.  I filled the role of creator, host, producer, engineer, editor, talent relations etc.  I was the show!  I contacted and interviewed every artist on the show, created every playlist, recorded every interview with the artists, held down the website and posted every edition of the show myself.  I did all of that and promoted the show without any type of machine behind me.  I managed to gain listeners across the country AND globe.  People as far as Africa, Alaska and Asia have heard my voice via The B Side Show and for that I am forever grateful.  Again, I have to stress, this was 10 years ago when it wasn’t as easy as it is now.  There was a lot to learn but I managed to do it and put together some amazing radio content.  Content so dope that the shows have a fantastic shelf life, which brings me to now: I’m posting old episodes of my show for those who have never heard it AND for the overnight “radio hosts” that pop up daily…because, levels.  I also had a full time radio job at Sirius XM which kept me on my toes and my skills sharp because I worked on live radio broadcasts everyday.  I don’t know who in the terrestrial FM radio world besides talk radio shows actually do FULL LIVE radio broadcasts everyday but being in that environment made me the radio beast that I became.  So here we are.  Me with tons of content a decade later and a platform to share it.  I’m unlocking the vault and rereleasing some of my old shows for the next few months or until I get tired of hearing myself again.  The first oldie but goodie comes at a perfect time.  The year is 2007 and I decided to tackle the gay marriage conversation on my 8th show.  MY 8TH SHOW EVER, lol.  I went straight for the jugular clearly and despite the freedom of shows today, back then no one was really talking about these topics while playing “B Side” songs and songs from newer artists.  The topic of gay marriage was quite controversial then, even our beloved President Obama at the time did not fully support it so my views were probably considered a little on the radical side since most people were not willing to say out loud on a public platform that they supported gay marriages.  Other than the somewhat dated material, the show still sounds amazing technically, playlist is still fresh and I think I did a damn good job for it being my 8th completed show.  Listen below and you be the judge!  

Just in time for Pride month I present: The B Side Show #8 “Gay Marriages” Air Date: Winter 2007.

 

Happy Pride! (throwback video of when I walked in the parade – 2011)

It’s the most wonderful time of the year…PRIDE!  If you don’t know, I support the LGBTQ community to the fullest and since 2011 (WOW that feels like yesterday) I have walked in the NYC Pride Parade with my cousin and her wife.  I captured some pretty epic footage the first year that we walked in the parade and decided to bring it back just in time for this year’s celebration.  This is all raw footage of the day but it does a pretty good job of showing just how much fun the Pride Parade is.  Enjoy!

Part 1

Part 2